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Jumping the Shark Podcast #238

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This week Holly, Todd and Brandon all take the Gamer Motivation Profile Test at to get a sense of what drives them:

Holly’s Gamer Profile
Brandon’s Gamer Profile
Todd’s Gamer Profile

Surprises all around and we welcome you to post yours!

Wrapping up, Brandon is excited for The Taken King as well as Mike Bithell’s new game Volume, Holly is not impressed with Sunless Sea and Todd takes Invisible, Inc out for another spin.

Thanks for listening! (You can contact Brandon at Brandon at, Todd at Todd at and Holly at @winnersusedrugs.)

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READ ALSO:  Jumping the Shark Podcast Episode #196

Todd Brakke

Todd was born in Ann Arbor with a Michigan helmet in one hand and a mouse in the other. (Never you mind the logistics of this.) He grew, vertically anyway, and proceeded to spend over 16 years as a development editor for Pearson Education, publishing books, videos, and digital learning products under the Que and Sams Publishing imprints. Because that wasn't enough of a challenge, Todd has also been a 20-year part-time snob about video games, writing reviews, features, and more for multiple outlets. Follow him on Twitter @ubrakto or check it out his website at

3 thoughts to “Jumping the Shark Podcast #238”

  1. I won’t have a chance to listen to the episode until later this morning, but here are my survey results. Hopefully the spam filter doesn’t shut me down:

    In my head, the Action preference would probably have been a few ticks closer to Immersiveness because of games like Ninja Gaiden Black, Just Cause 2, and Red Faction: Guerrilla. The stories in those games are effectively incomprehensible, but I played the heck out of them because their combat systems were so much fun.

    I also would have notched Social down even further. Theoretically, I’d enjoy participating in a large raid in an MMO or crewing up with four other people and strategizing in Heroes of the Storm. It just doesn’t happen. For all the friends I have who like sports, movies, TV shows, and books, nobody I know plays any games. No board games, no video games, no pen and paper RPGs — and since I don’t really connect with strangers online, virtually all of my gaming is done for single-player stories.

    That’s where Immersion comes in, and to the extent that it covers experiences like Dragon Age, Pillars of Eternity, The Witcher, and Dying Light, my 75% score is dead-on accurate. I like building effective characters and customizing elements in my games, but if I can’t connect with the characters or their situations, it takes uncommonly strong game mechanics to hold my attention. My favorite games of Civilization aren’t the ones where I grind out a victory on the hardest difficulty — they’re the ones where a real narrative develops between the different factions. I was once at war with the Persians for 800 years because they absolutely refused to make peace, and let me tell you: developing nuclear weapons and obliterating their cities from the map in a cataclysmic alpha strike is one of my strongest Civ memories.

    Finally, I also like hearing other people get really invested in their own stories. Holly’s love of “walking simulators” is one of the reasons why I feel she meshes so well with the show, and I’m -really- looking forward to hearing the Witcher 3 spoiler-segment from the last episode after I’ve finished that game!

    1. Your profile and mine came out very, very similar, with the heavy emphasis on immersion. A couple of listeners posted theirs to Twitter and, unlike the rest of us (so far), both featured much more strongly on the social aspects.

      Hopefully you have fun with the discussion in the show. I still call bullshit on Brandon’s tiny Mastery score. 🙂

      Definitely want to hear what you think of Witcher 3 after you finish it up and have a chance to digest the spoiler stuff!

      1. After listening to the episode last week, it’s possible Brandon’s Mastery rating came in low for the same reason mine did.

        I finished Lego Lord of the Rings this weekend, and like most of the Lego games, I mean I FINISHED it. All the characters, minikits, hidden treasure items, mithril bricks and craftable gear — I finished everything there was to do, despite encountering a handful of really nasty bugs that delayed my progress. I also tend to complete all the side content in Assassin’s Creed, FarCry, Dragon Age, and Fallout games because I have a great time exploring those worlds.

        But when the survey asks how “important” hidden content and side objectives are, I rated it pretty low. For every game like Inquisition where I’ll spend eighty hours polishing every last objective out of the quest log, there’s a game like Heavy Rain, Dreamfall, The Walking Dead, or Gone Home which I’ll play exactly once, portray my character as earnestly as possible within their story, and make absolutely no attempt to seek out any meta-game content.

        I was also thinking of Holly’s articles about gaming with OCD, and people who will spend actual real-world money for “DLC” to get all that side content uncovered from the start. Those are the folks who would probably rate the side content as Highly Important — I just do the stuff I find entertaining, and when I’m ready to power my way down the main story path, I’m content do that instead.

        Maybe it’s just me, but if the survey had been phrased, “How often do you enjoy seeking out optional objectives separate from a game’s main plot?”, my response would have been closer to “All The Damn Time.”

        On the completely unrelated topic of Brandon’s return to Destiny, I’d used some footage of his Alpha stream to cut together a quick teaser for his planned streaming series. There was no reason to bring it up after the series wound up delayed, but The Taken King is as good an excuse as any to share the epic voyage of Guardian Beaners. Just run a YouTube search for “Guardian Beaners Embraces Destiny” and it should come right up if anyone’s interested!

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